Network Topologies

Topology is basically the pattern of interconnection of nodes or workstations in a network.

The selection of topology for a network can not be done in isolation as it affects the choice of media and the access method used.

There are a number of factors that is used to consider in making this choice. Here are the list of some of the most important of which:

  • cost
  • flexibility
  • reliability

Now, let's briefly describe about the above three terms.


For a network to be cost effective, then one would try to minimize the installation cost. This may be done by using well understood media and also, to lesser extent, by minimizing the distances involved.


Because the arrangement of furniture, internal walls etc. in offices is often subject to change, the topology should allow for easy reconfiguration of the network. This involves moving existing nodes and adding new ones.


Failure in a network can take in the following two forms:

  • An individual node or workstation can malfunction - This is not a serious fault.
  • The network itself fails to operate - This is a serious fault.

The topology chosen for the network can help by allowing the location of the fault to be detected and to provide some means of isolating it.

In this tutorial of network topologies, you will learn about all the network topologies one by one divided into the following separate tutorials:

You will learn all about the above network topologies one by one divided into separate tutorials.

Networking Online Test

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